Buck insists days when Terry called the shots are finished

Chelsea chairman says club will stick by their man but warns he is now treading a thin line

John Terry's political power at Chelsea has all but evaporated. The captain's influence once extended beyond the Stamford Bridge dressing room and into the boardroom, but the year-long racism scandal which ended with a four-match ban for abusing QPR's Anton Ferdinand in October last year has left the chairman Bruce Buck speaking about Terry as someone to be tolerated at the club, rather than listened to as a spokesman.

Terry's influence was held up as a major factor in the dismissal of Andre Villas-Boas last season, after the manager had tried to freshen up the side while relying less on the older members of the squad. And Claude Makelele, the former Chelsea midfielder, claimed that a row between the defender and Jose Mourinho led to the manager's exit in September 2007, after Terry had spoken to the owner, Roman Abramovich, about the pair's disagreement over his fitness.

But Buck, who is in the midst of yet another race row after the club reported the referee Mark Clattenburg to the Football Association for "inappropriate language" directed at Jon Obi Mikel, said: "Chelsea are not run by John Terry. I don't know how I can prove it to you but it's not true. My club are run by Roman Abramovich."

Buck concedes the club have a parental responsibility towards Terry and the rest of the players. And with regards to his captain's conduct, the chairman admits they have little choice but to support Terry as a player and employee, but stressed the difference between this and approval of the player's actions. He added: "I can't argue with the fact that, over the last 10 years, there have been a lot of public incidents in which Terry and Chelsea were involved.

"We have a duty of care to John Terry in loco parentis. Not that, if he did something wrong, we weren't going to say he didn't do anything wrong. But we have to support him as a person. That's different from saying that, no matter what Terry does, we approve.

"There are things players would do that we don't approve of but that doesn't mean we don't provide them with care during their problem period. The situation is a very good deterrent for others to say to themselves, maybe, I shouldn't behave in this fashion."

Terry was widely reported to be part of a cabal of senior players who engineered Villas-Boas's dismissal, but Buck flatly denied this allegation, pointing to the team's poor performances before the manager's exit.

"It didn't take the players to tell us we were not going in the right direction," Buck said. "I knew that, Mr Abramovich knew that. When Andre left, we were in a very difficult situation about to be bounced out of the Champions League, doing very poorly in the Premier League."

Buck is at pains to separate the Clattenburg affair from Terry's offence. He admits the club could have handled things differently on 28 October when the referee for Chelsea's 3-2 loss to Manchester United was accused of racially abusing Mikel – calling the midfielder a monkey, according to Buck – and Juan Mata. The Mata allegations were dropped four days later.

But he stands by the club's decision to notify the FA - and emphasised the fact that it was the club, rather than the players, who went to the governing body. "Looking into the players' eyes, I could see they were unhappy but no player or staff demanded that we file a complaint," Buck said. "They gave us their statements. The decision was made by us, the Chelsea management. Suppose we had tried to sweep this under the rug and said to the various players, 'Look, it's not a big deal and the press are going to be all over us, maybe you want to reconsider.' If that had leaked out, we would've really been crucified.

"We felt we had to issue a statement because Sky was calling up Steve Atkins [Chelsea's head of communications] saying, 'We hear there was a racial incident.' There were others who called Steve. The press room is next to the ref's office and they heard something. If we were doing it again, we would probably have worded our Sunday statement differently and not gone into the details. But hindsight is wonderful. But we had to do what we thought was right and you take the consequences.

"The press seem to juxtapose 'our support' of John Terry and what's going on here and looking at us as being a bit hypocritical. We have to divorce the John Terry situation from this. From our perspective, the latest situation was pretty straightforward. We have an obligation to report what may be misconduct."

Both Buck and Ron Gourlay, the chief executive, yesterday used gun analogies to describe the damage the tumultuous year has done to the club. Buck admitted the coverage "has made some dents in our armour", while Gourlay said: "There are things that have happened that damaged the image. There are bullet prints in our armour."

Captain Controversy: Terry's timeline

Sept 2001 Accused of insulting American tourists following a drinking session at Heathrow Airport the day after the 9/11 attacks.

Jan 2002 Charged with assault after altercation with a nightclub bouncer. He was later cleared.

March 2008 Received a £60 fine after parking his Bentley in a disabled bay at Pizza Express.

March 2009 Terry's mother and mother-in-law cautioned by police after being accused of shoplifting.

Dec 2009 Reportedly received £10,000 from undercover reporters for tour of Chelsea's training ground. Chelsea dismissed the claims.

Jan 2010 Reported that the player had an alleged affair with the former girlfriend of Wayne Bridge.

Sept 2012 Found guilty by the FA of racially abusing the Queen's Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand.

AVB was 'terminated' by Abramovich

Bruce Buck believes the Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich's decision to "terminate" Andre Villas-Boas last season was vindicated by the club's success. Villas-Boas was sacked in March this year after nine months in charge, after a defeat by West Bromwich Albion left the club in fifth, 20 points behind the leaders and eventual champions Manchester City. Roberto Di Matteo was appointed interim manager and the club went on to win the FA Cup and Champions League.

Buck said: "The proof is in the pudding: Andre was terminated and we wound up winning two trophies. I want to hear you congratulate Mr Abramovich and Chelsea for making that change."

Arts and Entertainment
The first film introduced Daniel Radcliffe to our screens, pictured here as he prepares to board the train to Hogwarts for the first time.
booksHow reading Harry Potter helps children grow up to be gay-friendly
Netherlands' goalkeeper Tim Krul fails to make a save from Costa Rica's midfielder Celso Borges during a penalty shoot-out in the quarter-final between Netherlands and Costa Rica during the 2014 FIFA World Cup
newsGoalkeepers suffer from 'gambler’s fallacy' during shoot-outs
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Standing the test of time: Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'
filmReview: A week late, Secret Cinema arrives as interactive screening goes Back to the Future
Chancellor George Osborne, along with the Prime Minister, have been 'complacently claiming the economy is now fixed', according to shadow Chancellor Ed Balls
i100... which is awkward, because he is their boss, after all
Arts and Entertainment
Sydney and Melbourne are locked in a row over giant milk crates
artCultural relations between Sydney and Melbourne soured by row over milk crate art instillation
Arts and Entertainment
Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux play teeneage lovers in the French erotic drama 'Blue Is The Warmest Colour' - The survey found four times as many women admitting to same-sex experiences than 20 years ago
filmBlue Is The Warmest Colour, Bojack Horseman and Hobbit on the way
Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
peopleBenidorm, actor was just 68
Arts and Entertainment
Preparations begin for Edinburgh Festival 2014
Edinburgh festivalAll the best shows to see at Edinburgh this year
View from the Llanberis Track to the mountain lake Llyn
Du’r Arddu
environmentA large chunk of Mount Snowdon, in north Wales, is up for sale
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

Eye on the prize

Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

Women's rugby

Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices